- Battle of Skafida
Infobox Military Conflict
conflict=Battle of Skafida
commander2=Michael IX Palaiologos
The Battle of Skafida ( _bg. Битка при Скафида) occurred in
1304near Sozopol, Bulgaria. As a result the Bulgarian Empireovercame the crisis from the end of the 13th century, achieved internal stability and regained most of Thrace. For a time afterwards, Byzantiumwasn't a serious threat to it.
Origin of the conflict
Theodore Svetoslavwas crowned Emperor of Bulgariain 1300, he sought revenge for the Tatarattacks on the state in the previous 20 years. The traitors were punished first, including Patriarch Joakim III, who was found guilty of helping the enemies of the crown. Then the tzar turned to Byzantium, which had inspired the Tatarinvasions and had managed to conquer many Bulgarian fortresses in Thrace. In 1303his army marched southwards and regained many towns. In the following year the Byzantinescounter-attacked and the two armies met near the Skafida river.
Byzantineshad an advantage in the beginning and managed to push the Bulgariansacross the river. They were so infatuated with the chase of the retreating soldiers that they crowded on the bridge, which had been sabotaged before the battle by the Bulgarians, and broke down. The river was very deep at that place and many Byzantinesoldiers panicked and drowned, which helped the Bulgarians snatch victory.
After the victory, the
Bulgarianscaptured a lot of Byzantine soldiers and according to custom the ordinary people were released and only the nobles were held for ransom. The Bulgarian army continued its victorious campaign and the enemy could not stop them, although the Byzantineemperor melted his personal treasure in order to recruit more soldiers. A peace treaty was signed in 1307that lasted until Theodore Svetoslav's death in 1321.
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